Environmental Education Program
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Download MAEE Policy Handbook(this is a PDF file)
The Environmental Education Program is designed for:
♦ Individuals who want to pursue a career in environmental education, including work in environmental education centers, museums, or nonprofit organizations whose mission includes environmental education;
♦ Environmental educators who want to deepen their knowledge and professional standing in the field;
♦ In-service teachers who want to learn more about addressing environmental issues in (and outside) the classroom.
Program requirements are flexible and designed to give you the opportunity to create a challenging interdisciplinary program that meets your interests, reflects your prior experiences, and focuses on your professional goals.
The quality of our environment is a central concern in the world today - and so is the need for individuals throughout society to understand the issues we all face regarding the sustainability of our planet. The demand for well-trained teachers and related professionals educating people about environmental issues in elementary and secondary schools, in college classrooms, in science and nature centers, and at work continues to grow. The UNH M.A. Progam in Environmental Education is dedicated to preparing educators who can effectively promote awareness, knowledge, and constructive participation in deliberation over the important environmental questions that we face.
Our program has flexible requirements and gives students the opportunity to work closely with an advisor to create an individualized course of study that meets their interests, reflects their prior experiences, and focuses on their professional goals. Students apply during the fall or spring terms and begin the program with an intensive four-week Summer Institute. The program also includes a field-based Practicum where students are given the opportunity to implement their educational ideas through a mentoring program at one of a variety of local environmental and educational organizations.
Guiding Principles of the Environmental Education Program
We believe that the following three guiding principles are crucial to the success of preparing environmental educators:
1. Environmental issues require a global and participatory perspective.
Responsible participation in decision-making about environmental quality requires critical reflection on our own use of resources and on the policies and programs that affect local, national, and international patterns of resource use. To support open dialogue and well-informed decision-making, environmental educators must understand the systemic and global nature of environmental issues and how to teach about these relationships in ways that help people become responsible members of a sustainable global ecosystem.
2. Environmental education is interdisciplinary.
Responsible management of natural resources requires the knowledge, skills and insights of people in many fields, including environmental science, social science and the humanities. environmental education must reflect this interdisciplinary knowledge in both the preparation of professionals for the field and in the creation of curriculum for students.
3. Environmental issues are inherently value-laden.
Constructive discussions about environmental quality and responsible resource management require participants to articulate and exchange well-reasoned justifications for the positions they hold on a wide range of topics. Individual views on environmental issues are deeply embedded in social, cultural, and economic systems, and environmental educators must recognize the values on which these systems are based. Because of the diversity that exists among individual world views, improving environmental quality and supporting responsible resource management require educational approaches that take into account the beliefs and values that give life meaning for different groups of people.